Seasoned Advice is a question and answer site for professional and amateur chefs. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I was making seaweed salad for the first time tonight and had just finished soaking my wakame for some time. I rinsed it and put it in a colander, but just couldn't squeeze out very much water. The pieces stuck to my hands, squished, and made gurgling noises; but for the most part remained sopping wet, and later tasted completely waterlogged. Am I missing something here? I know there's a way to get water out because I've tasted wonderfully light and refreshing seaweed salad before, but my wakame (even hours later) is just a slimy bowl of sopping seaweed. Thanks!

share|improve this question
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Most guides I've seen recommend a salad spinner after the initial draining/squeezing. I've never had trouble with that method.

Failing that, I guess you could blot or squeeze it with paper towels; that's what I used to do with lettuce before I had a spinner, and it works... sort of... but not as well, and you'll go through a lot of paper towels that way.

Given that we are talking about seaweed here, I wouldn't try to get it perfectly dry. Restaurants actually use specialized (and very expensive) automatic "vegetable dryers" that I believe operate on a similar concept as a clothes dryer. You're not going to get that kind of result at home. Just squeeze or spin-dry enough to get it past the "sopping" stage.

It's also possible that you soaked it too long. More than a few minutes and it will just turn to mush, which may have been your problem. I've seen at least one ridiculous recipe for seaweed salad calling for a 5-minute rinse and a 15+ minute soak, which is pretty much guaranteed to give you slime.

share|improve this answer
I haven't tried it with wakame myself, but wrapping something like blanched chard in a towel and twisting the free ends to squeeze it works extremely well. – Josh Caswell Dec 2 '12 at 19:50
True, you might be able to use a tea towel in place of paper towels... less absorbent but also less wasteful. – Aaronut Dec 2 '12 at 20:38
Ok, I'll take that into account next time. I'll definitely try a salad spinner, but I do think I probably soaked it too long. Would 5 minutes be a good time in general? – Walker Dec 3 '12 at 4:10
@Walker: 5 minutes may even be too long, although it's hard to be exact with variations in seaweed products (not to mention the water). You really just want to soften it; don't let it go completely limp. – Aaronut Dec 3 '12 at 23:21
Okay, thank you all! – Walker Dec 4 '12 at 5:18

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.